Tower of Knowledge

for: Engineers Australia, 2014 Freefall Experience Design Ideas Competition
with: Prof Alan Pert, Prof Gini Lee, Caroline Chong, Dhanika Kumaheri, Louise Turner
location: National Arboretum Canberra, Australia
year: Aug 2014
role: Architectural Designer
exhibition: Engineers Australia Convention 2014 | Village Centre, National Arboretum Canberra
type: Architecture

The Tower of Knowledge proposes a theatrical celebration of 100 years of engineering in Australia through the construction and re-construction of a tower structure, moving from form into landscape. The inverted tower as stage appropriates and occupies existing features of the Arboretum over a curated event encompassing 100 days of scenes and projects which aim to engage the community of engineers in a project of memory and growth.

The Tower of Knowledge celebrates human ingenuity in manipulating materials and structures to progress occupation of the Australian landscape over time. The curated program builds upon familiar processes and events that shape the Canberra landscape. These qualities are potently present in the TCL curated landscapes of the Canberra Arboretum, and our proposal seeks to continue this trajectory to provoke new and future performances for the community, played out in this iconic site. The form of the cast tower is strangely familiar – appearing as it does in homage to the compelling fire towers that look out across the landscapes of Australia to warn of impending trouble on the horizon.

The tower is clearly monumental; in one guise representing the memory of the last 100 years of engineering innovation stored inside the walls of the lofty tower. Then, in its re-de-constructed form it becomes an embedded history lain across and growing up from the earth from which the Pin Oak Forest and its clearings convey the presence and care of the profession of Engineers.